Tummy tuck tattoo/cover-ups

I want to know how long should I wait to get a tattoo over my tummy tuck scar or are there other alternatives besides a tattoo that will fade the scar? Question for TT patients: I'm in the DC & MD area do you know any tattoo artist with experience working on clients to cover scars? Thanks

Doctor Answers 8

Tattoos after tummy tucks

In general tattoos are a great way to deal with the color changes associated with scaring. At six months most are ready for one. The tattoo artists that you want are everywhere, ask to see a scar that the tattoo artist has camouflaged, not just his best skull and bones. Speak to your plastic surgeon about this before you go through with it, and good luck.

Waldorf Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Cover up a scar

 if you would like to cover up a scar with tattoo pigment I would recommend that you wait about a year for the final result of the scar. If you want to make the scar look better rather than try to cover enough many new techniques  have recently been described using fractional lasers and a drug delivery system of topical applications that can help scars to both fade and flatten. I recommend you talk to your plastic surgeon about these newer techniques. You may be able to make the scar itself look very good and not need to hide it with tattoo pigments.

Marc J. Salzman, MD, FACS
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Tattoo to cover tummy tuck scar

Thank you for your question! I would recommend waiting at least a full year after abdominoplasty to allow your scar to mature. Scars initially are raised up, and dark purple or red in color. As they mature they will flatten and fade. The final scar may be lighter or darker than the surrounding skin, and the treatment differs between the two types. A lighter (hypopigmented) scar may be improved by tattooing to match the surrounding skin. But a darker (hyperpigmented scar is best treated with BBL or profractional laser to help break up the pigment.

Jennifer Greer, MD
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 10 reviews


Thank you for your question.
You should follow up with your surgeon to discuss this more in detail. The determining factor will be based on how your recovery is going and if your surgeon feels that you are fully healed enough to move forward with a tattoo in the area.

Frederick G. Weniger, MD, FACS, MBA
Hilton Head Island Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Tummy tuck tattoo

Hello dear, thanks for your post, It is perfectly fine for you to get a tattoo over your incision. You may be surprised, but the scar/incision will likely not look at bad as you may be expecting. In most cases, after six months to a year, the scar is hardly noticeable. However, this is not true for everyone, so it is nice to have the option to place a tatoo. If you do choose to get a tattoo, I would suggest waiting at least 8 to 12 months before having it done, to make sure the scar is completely healed. In addition, be sure your swelling has resolved. Best Wishes :)

Tania Medina de Garcia, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 418 reviews

Tummy tuck scar

The final appearance of the scar after a tummy tuck procedure varies widely among patients.  Your scar will continue to mature for a year or more. It will change in its appearance during this time. This is why surgeons typically wait a year before they make decisions about scar revision. My recommendation would be to wait until the one-year mark after your procedure. If you're not happy with the appearance of your scar at this time, you can discuss  with your surgeon.  In the short term after your procedure, I recommend Embrace scar therapy.  This treatment has been shown to improve the appearance of scars.  Best wishes to you!

Erik Miles, MD, FACS
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Tummy tuck tattoo/cover-ups

Everyone heals at a different rate. If your healing is perfect, you might be able to get a tattoo within 3 months of the procedure. However, if you're on the fence about the tattoo and just want your scar to be better, there are a variety of silicone creams and sheeting out there that can help with a nice scar. Talk it over with your plastic surgeon. The longer you wait to get the tattoo, the more mature the scar will be and the more predictable the tattoo with be. 

Hope that helps!


Christopher D. Knotts, MD, FACS
Reston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Tummy Tucks and Tattoo/Cover-ups

The scar from your tummy tuck is a continual state of remodeling for up to one-year after surgery.  In my practice I recommend waiting one year.

John Millard, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.